By Jacob MaslowBranded Content

If college graduation day is in your recent past, now is the time to start getting serious about dealing with a few of life’s important issues. Whether you’re fresh out of school or several years into a new career, attend to priorities that matter, like setting up a tax-deferred retirement account. If you’re lucky, an employer offers a different kind of IRA known as a 401(k), which allows for larger contributions and potentially generous payouts.

Don’t fall into the trap of assuming that just because you’re still relatively young, it’s okay to put things off for a few more years. By the same token, be careful to focus on a couple of the non-financial moves you should be making, like incorporating rest and leisure time into your daily life and building a professional network. Of course, now is also the perfect time to refinance student loans in order to save money on monthly payments. Getting life insurance and setting up a regular savings plan are other pieces of the puzzle. Here are details about how to get started on the most critical projects.

Refinance Your Student Loans

It doesn’t matter whether you’re paying on one or a half-dozen college loans. The smartest move a recent grad can make is to refinance all of them into one new obligation. Young working people can save a lot when they refinance school debt. The logical first step of the process is to find an online resource that lets borrowers scan for personalized loan refinancing rates from multiple lenders. The one-stop-shop approach makes sense for a number of reasons. Other than the convenience factor, using such a site gives users a chance to compare rates and terms. There’s no better way to get the best refinancing deals and chop a significant amount off monthly expenses.

Open an Individual Retirement Account

When it comes to IRAs, there are a few essential guidelines. Don’t procrastinate, and don’t think you’ll always be able to contribute the maximum annual amount to an IRA. Plus, don’t think you’re too young to plan for retirement. Now is the best time to get the benefit of compound interest. Know the two main types of IRAs, one of which uses tax-deferred income and one that doesn’t (the Roth IRA). Finally, get professional financial advice if you have any questions. It’s imperative to get accounts set up according to legal requirements and to start contributing to them as soon as possible.

Buy Life Insurance

Take advantage of being young and healthy and get a steal on the price of excellent coverage that can never be canceled. Don’t leave things to chance by purchasing the first policy that looks like a good deal. Instead, use a reliable website Marketplace by Navient platform that lets you compare rates for several top carriers. Find out how much coverage you need by using one of the many available formulas that take age, income, and preference into account.

Build Leisure Time into Your Life

It’s easy to become a workaholic, so don’t risk burnout. Many young professionals join a gym or do regular exercise to stay healthy. However, one of the central benefits of working out is to have an outlet from the pressures of work. Plus, gyms are a great place to meet people outside your career field, make some personal contacts, and casually socialize. Beware of overindulging with alcohol, and learn how to party responsibly. Too many young working people let their guard down and end up with addiction problems. It’s best to cut off that possibility before it happens.

Save Regularly

One of the secrets to building wealth is learning how to save consistently. The wisest first step is to automate the process via a payroll savings plan through an employer or bank. Avoid accumulating a significant amount of debt, especially if you have high-limit credit cards. Create an emergency fund that is roughly equal to three months of income. Aim to set aside between 3% and 7% of monthly income, but adjust that amount if needed.

Photo Courtesy // Jacob Maslow //